Its interesting when you take a step back and look at what a company offers as a whole. Typically there are people in place that recognize a demand, the company then acts on meeting that demand, customers are happy and the brand thrives. In the videogame business this isn’t always the case. With high production costs, stockholders to please and whatever else that goes on behind the scenes, we can clearly see that this isn’t always the same business model.
A company like Square-Enix is a prime example given that there is a clear demand for a particular remake but the customer is expected to be satisfied with entirely different products. To their credit, FF13 and FF14 were not what the fans wanted but Square-Enix made efforts to appease fans by creating a sequel (or make adjustments) with yet another sequel yet to come. This is not to be confused with a rant though. Its as simple as if you’re not going to make the game your customer wants, don’t expect them to be be blindly content with the ones you think they should have.
This brings me to more of what SE has in development for the near future. The first title is Murdered: Soul Suspect. Essentially this a take on L.A. Noir but with a poltergeist-Salem witch theme twist. If the story grabs you then you’ll enjoy it but from the looks of it I see this title garnering average reviews.
Thief to those of us not aware of the title’s history kind of, well I’ll just say it looks like a Dishonored clone. This is unfair given the fact that Thief came first but the success of Dishonored just makes it seem like the wind has already been taken from the sails so to speak. Hopefully we’ll see something that really makes the title stand out but as of now its hard to cast any light in Dishonored’s shadow.
Saint’s Row 4. I’m not going to take away from the fact that these titles can be fun but so soon after the third installment this just looks like an opportunity to cash-in. Square has every right to do so given they’ve recently acquired the brand and they have to capitalize before GTA 5 arrives. It also doesn’t hurt that the title has been recently banned in Australia, at least as far as publicity is concerned.
I’ve already touched on Final Fantasy but never is the Final Fantasy series (lately) content with just a single release. With the ongoing support for FF11 it is impressive that one company is attempting to please two MMORPG audiences or was it expected that everyone would have migrated from FF11 when FF14 originally released?
Final Fantasy Versus 13 was first planned to be released shortly after FF13 but it was delayed. After quite some time of wondering when it would arrive, now we know the title has been rebranded as FF15. I must say that this one looks interesting as well as technically impressive. Anyone not impressed with any of the FF13 titles would do well to check out the trailers for FF15.
Finally, especially because I’d rather this article not drag on. We come to a series that rivals Final Fantasy if not surpasses it in many ways. Kingdom Hearts will see a variety of releases in the coming year but most significant would have to be KH3. If you just take a moment to consider the IPs that Disney has acquired since the last KH then you’d only be that more excited about what surprises may be lurking in KH3.
While it definitely looks like the upcoming Square-Enix releases won’t please everybody. Its still safe to say that they have something for everybody and they’re also making some attempts to please their most die-hard audiences (to a degree). In the end the shareholders may be the only ones that can answer if its hip to be Square-Enix. As a gamer you can at the very least chime in. What are your opinions of Square-Enix? What titles have I not mentioned are you looking forward to purchasing?